Air pump to fend off BBA

Discussion in 'Algae' started by swackett, 12 Sep 2017.

  1. swackett

    swackett Member

    Joined:
    29 May 2008
    Messages:
    439
    Location:
    Epsom, Surrey
    I've been reading about BBA and it appears extra Oxygen is helpful to ensure organics in the tank are broken down better.

    I know BBA is potentially caused by a build up of organics so we have upped the water change to 4 buckets a week rather than 3 and also are feeding the fish a bit less.

    Has anyone setup an air pump to run overnight when the lights and co2 are off and have they noticed their BBA has been stopped in its tracks?
     
  2. AverageWhiteBloke

    AverageWhiteBloke Member

    Joined:
    27 Oct 2009
    Messages:
    2,738
    Location:
    Cumbria
    It's unlikely that better oxygen will deal with BBA. From what I can make out its linked to fluctuating co2 levels.
    Having said all that increasing oxygen is always beneficial to tanks as is the increased water changes so go for it anyway.
    The filter is only limited to the amount of waste in can break down by o2 i.e lots of waste = good bacteria reproducing fast to feed of it = lots of oxygen required to sustain the bacteria.

    At night plants are using o2 as are the fish and the filter so increasing o2 through night is a good thing.

    Sent from my STH100-2 using Tapatalk
     
  3. ian_m

    ian_m Global Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    25 Jan 2012
    Messages:
    5,064
    Location:
    Eastleigh
    I run an air pump over night and makes no difference to BBA or any other algae.

    What is does do is stop a surface film appearing (a sign of poor plant health :() and produces a differing flow pattern that lifts detritus into the water column to be take away by the filter and help degas away CO2.
     
    Westyggx likes this.
  4. roadmaster

    roadmaster Member

    Joined:
    18 Oct 2009
    Messages:
    1,456
    Location:
    United States
    Helps to keep filters cleaned monthly rather than every 3 to 6 month's like some folk's do.
    Organic matter,detritus, not truly removed from tank until removed from filter material.
    Increased % of water changed and less food's would in my view help also.
    I rigged up small pump and hose to make water changes easier than toting bucket's, and purchased spare set's of media for filter's that I can easily swap out dirty material(pads) for clean media.
    So long as there are plant's,and or some biomedia in the filter.you can remove up to 505 of filter media and either replace,or clean aggressively without much issue.
     
  5. swackett

    swackett Member

    Joined:
    29 May 2008
    Messages:
    439
    Location:
    Epsom, Surrey
    We do water changes every week with monthly or less filter cleans and we change about 42 litres of our 100 litre tank each week.

    I have an old air stone so I'll put that in on a timer to run overnight for a few weeks and see if it helps stop the spread of this algae and improves the overall health of the tank.
     
  6. AverageWhiteBloke

    AverageWhiteBloke Member

    Joined:
    27 Oct 2009
    Messages:
    2,738
    Location:
    Cumbria
    Totally agree with this, reducing the interval time of cleaning my filters has been by far the most beneficial thing I've ever done. Filters fill up with rubbish far quicker than most think and as you say waste being sucked into the filter isn't the end of it, its still breaking it down. When the waste is removed from the filter the bacteria are waiting for it coming down and ready to deal with it, when the filter is full of gunk the bacteria already have plenty on their hands breaking down solids. Increasing o2 helps boost the filter in this process and at night is when o2 is at its lowest so night time o2 is good for the filter and the fish. In ADA tanks as far as I can make out they lift the inlets to create surface agitation to circumvent this same as the Dennerle scapers tanks where you can adjust the outlet to do the same thing.

    Me personally I use a surface skimmer to achieve the same effect but old skool airstone is good.
     
    dw1305 likes this.
  7. swackett

    swackett Member

    Joined:
    29 May 2008
    Messages:
    439
    Location:
    Epsom, Surrey
    Should I get a surface skimmer then? They seem cheepish at £20 for an Eheim 350. How long is yours on for, overnight only?
     
  8. AverageWhiteBloke

    AverageWhiteBloke Member

    Joined:
    27 Oct 2009
    Messages:
    2,738
    Location:
    Cumbria
    I personally run mine 24/7 only knocking it off for half an hour or so during feeding to prevent food being sucked into it. I have two versions which I sort of done a review on in this post, they both have their pros and cons. You can if you wish just run it over night, the upside of this is you will use far less co2 and the filter sponge that comes with them isn't that big and has access to surface oxygen so no real worry about it stagnating while knocked off. I find though I can run higher co2 when my o2 levels are up when it comes to the fish but they are quite wasteful regarding co2. I use both the eheim and the one in the link but to good effect. Again though nothing wrong with an airstone if you have one knocking about but for me the sound of a pump running would drive me nuts. But obviously less equipment on show in the tank.
     
  9. swackett

    swackett Member

    Joined:
    29 May 2008
    Messages:
    439
    Location:
    Epsom, Surrey
    So would go for the aps one? How do you fix the Eheim one to stop fish being sucked in?
     
  10. AverageWhiteBloke

    AverageWhiteBloke Member

    Joined:
    27 Oct 2009
    Messages:
    2,738
    Location:
    Cumbria
    People have came up with different solutions including putting a coarse filter sponge on the intake, for me I put black looms bands around it to form a grill if you like which reduces the size of things that can be sucked in which works for me although I no longer keep RCS in the tank. When I did RCS would often be found in there sometimes alive sometimes not depending on how long they had been in there. Small fry and baby shrimp are going to end up in there whatever you do I reckon.

    When I was using the APS one even with the grill I would find RCS in there and at times I found that depending on the amount of surface scum in the tank the grill wasn't enough to break the surface tension but popping the grill off soon cured this in a matter of minutes (it is removable) but obviously this then removes the safety measure while you run without. The APS one can also be run without the venturi the pipe which just pops off.

    Won't help you making your mind up but IMO they are both equally effective with the APS one being cheaper, cheaper to run and easier to maintain. Not exactly sure why I continue to use the Eheim if I'm honest but I bought it so I use it. As as far as I can make out they're both 350lph turnover so no diff there and both are a similar size.
     
  11. AverageWhiteBloke

    AverageWhiteBloke Member

    Joined:
    27 Oct 2009
    Messages:
    2,738
    Location:
    Cumbria
    Just ton add, the reason I run 24/7 as oppose to just at night is because it creates water movement in a dead spot in the tank across the back. Dual purpose if you like.
     
  12. swackett

    swackett Member

    Joined:
    29 May 2008
    Messages:
    439
    Location:
    Epsom, Surrey
    Brilliant thanks for the information, maybe I'll go for a skimmer as it would be good to get rid of the surface film we have. Not sure about which one yet, I like ehiem products as they seem well built, so may end up with that one. We don't have any RCS, just Amano shrimp, lemon tetras and Cory's.

    Thanks for your help.
     
  13. AverageWhiteBloke

    AverageWhiteBloke Member

    Joined:
    27 Oct 2009
    Messages:
    2,738
    Location:
    Cumbria
    No problem. I'm victim to branding as well eheim have a good name in the industry and I bought one just because but really they are no different. I think the thing I like about the aps the most is being able to pull the filter sponge out and clean it without taking the unit out the tank. Only need to remove the unit to clean the impeller.

    Decisions, decisions.

    Sent from my STH100-2 using Tapatalk
     
  14. Daveslaney

    Daveslaney Member

    Joined:
    21 May 2016
    Messages:
    835
    Location:
    Nottinghamshire
    Higher O2 levels as well as benifiting the good bacteria in your tank will also increase the ORP in the water,This is basically the waters ability to self clean by oxidizing organics in the water, Prob the best oxigenators in your tanks are your plants. When your plants photosynthesise at a fastest and pearl the O2 levels are near saturation point so the waters ORP is the highest.
    So increased O2 levels will help with BBA because you will have a cleaner tank;).
     
  15. AverageWhiteBloke

    AverageWhiteBloke Member

    Joined:
    27 Oct 2009
    Messages:
    2,738
    Location:
    Cumbria
    With you all the way Dave, the OP was asking originally if it will " Stop it in its tracks" unfortunately not, that will need manually removed, dealt with by BBA loving species like SAE or bombed with harsh chemicals.
    Increasing o2 generally will help to prevent it coming back or any algae for that matter. The benefits of o2 are often over looked because we're all too busy concentrating on co2. When people get their co2 right they forget that a bi product of it is increased oxygen production by the plants that makes the water look clearer and healthier and fish more active.
    Co2 while equally important steals o2's glory

    Sent from my STH100-2 using Tapatalk
     
    Daveslaney likes this.
  16. swackett

    swackett Member

    Joined:
    29 May 2008
    Messages:
    439
    Location:
    Epsom, Surrey
    Good comments guys, yes I was asking about the effect of higher o2 on BBA, and although I know it will not kill it, it should help stop it spreading along with an enhanced cleaning schedule. Removal will only be done as said by chemical intervention of removal of affected leaves.

    So I think the APS skimmer seems the best best as AWB says, easier to clean, cheaper to run, and probably cheaper to buy.
     
  17. swackett

    swackett Member

    Joined:
    29 May 2008
    Messages:
    439
    Location:
    Epsom, Surrey
    How often do you clean the filter sponge?
     
  18. AverageWhiteBloke

    AverageWhiteBloke Member

    Joined:
    27 Oct 2009
    Messages:
    2,738
    Location:
    Cumbria
    Every couple of days on the APS once a week on the Eheim. The sponge on the aps is very small, the one on the Eheim probably twice the size. We're not looking for any bio media effect here so size isn't that important, it's purely there to mechanically filter out bits of leaves etc the main point being to draw surface water down and break up the film as well as pulling high oxygenated water from the top of the column. The APS you can use planting tweezers, knock it off, pull out the floating part and remove dead leaves, quick rinse under the tap and back in. The Eheim you need to take the full thing out the water and strip it down to remove the sponge so I tend to do it on WC day. I know you do this more often with the APS but it really is a five minute job and a positive of this doing it every couple days is if one of your critters has inadvertently found itself sucked into you may catch it while it's still alive.

    In my RCS days after knocking it off I would give the tweasers a little wiggle in the chamber and you could virtually guarantee a RCS would pop out.
     
  19. AverageWhiteBloke

    AverageWhiteBloke Member

    Joined:
    27 Oct 2009
    Messages:
    2,738
    Location:
    Cumbria
    Quick one, I have to correct something I said earlier. The APS is 250lph and Eheim 350lph. Apologies for the misinformation.
     

Share This Page

Facebook Page
Twitter Page
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice